Gachagua: Why Ruto pulled out of bipartisan talks with Azimio
Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua has suggested it is President William Ruto who pulled the plug on bipartisan talks with the opposition.
The DP spoke during musician Muigai wa Njoroge’s 25th-anniversary celebrations in Thika, Kiambu County.
He explained that the President had a change of heart after he sensed a lack of goodwill from the opposition.
Gachagua added that Azimio lacked honesty because its principals wanted to hold talks and demonstrations simultaneously.
“Our MPs can only engage their Azimio counterparts in bi-partisan parliamentary discussions when there are no demonstrations. We have instructed our MPs, led by National Assembly Majority Leader Kimani Ichung’wah, that there should be no talks as long as Azimio is holding the demonstrations. It is either a parliamentary process or demonstration. You cannot have both,” the DP said.
While the DP took a hard line that there should be no simultaneous demonstrations and bi-partisan talks, he disagreed with the police that Azimio should not hold demonstrations in the capital.
“You are free to demonstrate on Tuesday and make as much noise as you want, but there should be no destruction of other Kenyans’ property,” he added.
On Sunday morning, Nairobi police boss Adamson Bungei banned Azimio from holding mass demonstrations planned for Tuesday, May 2.
“Previous demonstrations have been nothing but peaceful and therefore by this letter we are refusing to allow Azimio to proceed,” Bungei said.
Azimio leader Raila Odinga said in a statement that the planned demonstrations would go ahead despite the police directive.
“We will exercise our right to assemble, demonstrate, picket and present petitions on Tuesday, May 2, 2023 as previously announced, despite the dark threats,” read part of the statement dated Sunday, April 30.
Unlike previous demonstrations, Raila announced that the protests on Tuesday, May 2,2023 would include a march within the Central Business District (CBD).